Tuscan kale, also known as Lacinato kale, Tuscan cabbage, Italian kale, Dinosaur kale, cavolo nero, and black kale, thrives during all three growing seasons of the Hudson Valley. It’s especially available during these steamy summer months, and we’re taking full advantage…. We present it to you direct from Migliorelli Farms in our retail cases at Gigi Market and throughout our menus in both locations. I thought I’d give you two different approaches to enjoying it; cooked and raw.
Gigi ‘LACINATO’: Sautéed Kale with Towne & Country Sausage
This is a new lunch and dinner side at the Trattoria in Rhinebeck, and part of our new summer menu. Enjoy this sautéed Italian black kale with Towne and Country spicy sausage or simply with garlic and Gigi extra-virgin olive oil.
Makes 2-3 servings
1 ½ tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
2 shallots, peeled and thinly sliced
4 ounces (about 2 links) Towne and Country spicy sausage, sliced or crumbled
Pinch crushed red pepper flakes
2 garlic cloves, minced
1 ½ pounds Tuscan kale, stems removed and leaves chopped, then rinsed and spun
2 tablespoons white wine
1 cup water
Heat the olive oil in a large sauté pan over high heat. Add the shallots, sausage, and red pepper flakes, and cook until the shallots and sausage just begin to brown, 3 to 4 minutes. Add the garlic and toss to combine. Stir in the kale and season with salt. Cook the kale, tossing or stirring to evenly wilt, then add the white wine and cook until fully evaporated. Add the water and cook until the kale is tender and the pan is almost dry, 4 to 5 minutes. Transfer to a serving bowl and enjoy hot or at room temperature.
Click here to watch a brief video of this dish being made.
Massaged Kale Salad
My friends (and Gigi devotees :)) Peter Amendola and Jerry Paglieri, shared this “massaged” raw kale salad with me, saying they often make it when entertaining and receive consistent raves from their guests. The acidity in the lemon juice “cooks” the thinly sliced kale making it tender and flavorful. Jerry became a fan when first trying Aati Sequeira’s recipe; as a confident cook he fined tuned it to his tastes and made it his own.
Makes 4 servings
1 large bunch Tuscan kale stalks removed and discarded, leaves thinly sliced
fresh juice of 1 lemon
1/3 cup extra-virgin olive oil
2 teaspoons maple syrup or honey
freshly ground black pepper
2 ripe peaches or nectarines, peeled and diced
2 tablespoons toasted pumpkin seeds
In large serving bowl, add the kale, half of lemon juice, a drizzle of oil and a little salt. Massage until the kale starts to soften and wilt, 2 to 3 minutes. Set aside while you make the dressing.
In a small bowl, whisk remaining lemon juice with the maple syrup and a healthy amount of freshly ground black pepper. Stream the olive oil into the bowl while whisking.
Pour the dressing over the kale, and add the peaches and pumpkin seeds. Toss and serve.